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benedict xvi no longer is the leader of the 1.2 billion roman catholics. his resignation the first of any pope in nearly 600 years took effect a couple hours ago. christiane amanpour is joining us. benedict ended his reign a couple of hours ago. what's it like now? what's the mood there? >> reporter: well, listen, i think people are taking it in stock and moving forward but i must say a couple of hours ago when 2:00 p.m. eastern, 8:00 p.m. local, the swiss guard, the traditional guard that protects the pope walked inside, closed the doors when he was at castel go gandolfo and you got that sense of finality t, it's been very dramatic when he flew in his helicopter, landed there, came out on the balcony of the summer residence and told people, i am no longer pope today. i am just a pilgrim. all of a sudden the emotion and enormity of what happened, because it's a precedent-setting event, all of that set in and you saw the pope look almost -- i don't know. almost relieved when he gave his last blessing. having looked very tired in morning in his meeting with the cardinals and yesterday durin
of this ends for pope benedict xvi. >> reporter: wolf, you're right. it was emotional for his devotees as he made his final appearance. st. peter's square behind me was packed and the pope came out in his popemobile and there were a lot of waves and st. peter's is behind me and the vatican is where this pope is spending his last night on the throne as pope. tomorrow he will say good-bye to cardinals and then at 5:00 p.m. local time here in rome he leaves the vatican and goes to castel gandolfo. people want there to be some distance between him and the conclave to elect the next pope. the empty seats set in and this interim period before a new pope is chosen. >> there will be an interim pope, acting pope? walk us through that between that and the time that a new pope is elected. >> not really. not formally in that name. there's secretary of state, heads of all of these very different bureaucracies here at the vatican. but is iiss as we know this is leader of the world's 1.2 billion catholics. as we know, the pope is more than just a religious leader. he's virtually a states man by virtue of t
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